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15 quotes to inspire journalists

It’s easy to find litanies of the things wrong with journalism today or the treatises of rumors and reasons it’s dying. This isn’t one of those lists. Instead, here’s a collection of quotes to inspire journalists and pay homage to those forging the future.

As you read these, feel free to replace newspaper with website and print with post, and so on. Think less about the specific word choice and more about the underlying truth.

“Journalism will kill you, but it will keep you alive while you’re at it.”
– Horace Greeley

“A good newspaper, I suppose, is a nation talking to itself.”
– Arthur Miller

“Journalism can never be silent: That is its greatest virtue and its greatest fault. It must speak, and speak immediately, while the echoes of wonder, the claims of triumph and the signs of horror are still in the air.”
– Henry Anatole Grunwald

“Bad things don’t happen to writers; it’s all material.”
– Garrison Keillor

“I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.”
– Voltaire

“I still believe that if your aim is to change the world, journalism is a more immediate short-term weapon.”
– Tom Stoppard

“Writing well means never having to say, ‘I guess you had to be there.’ ”
– Jef Mallett

“The less you know, the more you believe.”

– Bono

“Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.”
– Theodore Roosevelt

“Read, every day, something no one else is reading. Think, every day, something no one else is thinking. Do, every day, something no one else would be silly enough to do. It is bad for the mind to be always part of unanimity.”
– Christopher Morley

“Writing gives you the illusion of control, and then you realize it’s just an illusion, that people are going to bring their own stuff into it.”
– David Sedaris

“News is what someone wants suppressed. Everything else is advertising. The power is to set the agenda. What we print and what we don’t print matter a lot.”

– Katharine Graham

“I became a journalist to come as close as possible to the heart of the world.”

– Henry Luce

“The future does not fit in the containers of the past.”
– Rishad Tobaccowala

“In times of profound change, the learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.”
– Eric Hoffer

The last two are my personal favorites when it comes to the intersection of journalism and technology. What are your favorites? Share them in the comments.

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